I fell in love the first time I had a breakfast strata. I think the person serving it called it Breakfast Bread Pudding and it was similar but different from other egg dishes, and I found the combination of eggs, cubed bread, sausage and cheese wonderful. Another reason to love this dish is that most of the work is done the night before so in the morning it just has to be baked. This is perfect if you are serving brunch to guests and would rather be sipping mimosa’s with them than whipping eggs in the kitchen.
This particular recipe is adapted from Ree Drummond’s The Pioneer Woman: Sausage-Kale Breakfast Strata. I tweaked it just a bit and the results are delicious. I made it for our family potluck Easter Brunch. This makes a big 10×13 inch casserole, and could be halved, but it’s so good, and it reheats well so you may as well bake up the whole pan.
Breakfast Strata with Sausage
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman
1 16 oz loaf of French or Italian bread (I used ciabatta)
1 lb. sweet Italian sausage
1 onion, quartered and thinly sliced
a few sprigs of fresh rosemary, leaves finely minced
olive oil for cookingabout 10 oz. of greens, such as kale, spinach, chard or a combination, any thick stems removed. (I used a 5 oz. bag of baby kale and a 5 oz. bag of spinach)
2.5 cups milk (I used 2% and whole would be great. I would not recommend all skim milk for this recipe)
6 oz. Gruyere cheese, grated
salt and pepper
Optional: about 4 oz. grated Parmesan cheese for the top of the strata
Cut the bread into cubes and set aside.
Cook the sausage; squeeze it out of the casings if it is in links, break it apart as it cooks. Drain on paper towel.
Wipe pan and heat a little olive oil to cook the onions. Sprinkle in the rosemary when the onions are nearly done.
If your greens are in bags, you can open the bag, fold it over and microwave-steam the greens right in the bag for 1 to 3 minutes. If you are using greens sold in bunches or in bulk, chop coarsely and saute until just wilted.
After allowing the cooked greens to cool, squeeze out excess moisture.
Beat together eggs and milk, and season with salt and pepper.
Spray 10 x 13 inch casserole dish with nonstick spray and put in half the bread cubes, layer with half the greens, half the onions, half the sausage and half the Gruyere cheese.
Layer the remaining bread cubes, greens, onions, sausage and remaining Gruyere.
Slowly pour the egg and milk mixture over the casserole, moving around to get the whole casserole covered. If desired, sprinkle with optional grated Parmesan cheese.
Cover casserole with plastic wrap and put in refrigerator overnight.
Remove casserole from the fridge 30 minutes before baking. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, Remove plastic wrap from the dish and replace it with foil and bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Remove foil and continue baking until top is golden brown and becoming crisp around the edges.
This would make a lovely Sunday night supper. Thank you for stopping by.